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Music 232

Diatonic Harmony–Spring Semester 2020

MWF 10:00-10:50a, CA 136


Instructor: Jono Kornfeld

Office: CA 166F

Office Hours: M & W, 11:00a-1:00p; and by appointment

Phone: 415-338-6013, email

Graduate Assistant: Forrest Ballman, email








Recordings, reference and more!





Tonal Harmony – Textbook, 7th Edition


McGraw Hill, ISBN 0-07-285260-7


A College-Level Music Dictionary:

Oxford, Harvard, etc.


A Music Notation Manual: Norton, Alfred, etc.


The prerequisite for this course is MUS 231.


This course will focus on diatonic harmony, voice leading and simple forms of the common practice style, with an emphasis on the mechanics (through analyzing and writing) of four-part textures modeled after the style of the Bach Chorale.  Other textures for study will include solo piano, chamber and orchestral, as well as other single-line instruments.  Our goal will be to understand (through analysis, writing and listening exercises) how counterpoint and harmony are interrelated, and how the smaller mechanics of harmony and voice leading inform the larger formal aspects of common practice music–as well as other styles.  By the end of this course you should be able to compose and analyze a short diatonic piece in the keyboard and/or 4-part styles of the common practice era, and have a command of all associated vocabulary.


Your written work will consist of a mixture between homework, quizzes, and separate composition/analysis projects.


Each assignment and exam will have its own grade. You can also look up your grades to date through this link—grades are listed via an assigned alias to protect your privacy.


Class Participation: 5%

Students are expected to attend all classes and participate.  Participation means arriving on time, being fully present and engaged, and not behaving in a distracted or distracting manner.  Use of cell phones and/or electronic devices for non-emergency purposes will be considered disruptive and will count against your participation credit—they should be put away during class.


Keyboard harmony requirement: 5% (audio link)


Midterm piano composition project: 10%

Details will be announced.


Final composition project: 15%

Details will be announced.


Quizzes: 30%

In lieu of midterm and final exams, there will be approximately 12 quizzes. They will be announced in advance, but can be expected on a near weekly basis.  Quizzes will last between 10 -20 minutes, and will use questions drawn from the text and syllabus reading sheets (all downloadable in advance), and will be open-note/book. You should have a pencil and staff paper available for all quizzes.  Missed quizzes cannot be made up.  The lowest two grades will be dropped, so assuming there are 12 quizzes, each will be worth 3% of your grade.


Homework: 35%

Homework is due on the day announced by the end of class unless otherwise specified. Assignments must be downloaded and printed out. Late assignments will not be accepted unless otherwise specified, but reasonable excuses are ok in some cases. The lowest grade will be dropped. Putting an assignment into the in folder after its due date without any explanation will result in a grade of 0 for that assignment. Homework collaboration option.


Redo Policy: Unless otherwise specified, you can redo any homework assignment that gets less than a 93%.  The score of the redone version of the assignment will be averaged with the original score for a final assignment grade, with a maximum possible grade of 93%.  Redone assignments are due two class periods after the original assignment is handed back. Redoing an assignment means that you either make clear corrections on the original assignment, or that you hand in a copied-over, corrected version of the original assignment on a separate piece of paper. For the latter, you MUST staple the redone assignment to the original marked-up version; you don't have to copy over portions of the original assignment that were done correctly. This does NOT apply to quizzes or exams.


**Please note: the above percentages are subject to redistribution**


Missed assignments, quizzes or exams: in the event of an unforeseen absence, make-up exams/quizzes or assignment-extensions may be granted for extenuating circumstances, and only on a case-by-case basis.  Such circumstances must be documented (i.e. a doctor's note, etc.) and I must be notified in advance, not afterwards.


Extra credit assignments (optional): may be assigned and will be announced in class.


Plagiarism: While some collaboration is expected and productive, the bulk of your assignments and definitely any compositions must be done individually unless otherwise specified.  Violations will be subject to the University's Code of Conduct as it relates to such matters.


Please note the following from the SFSU Bulletin: To receive credit toward completion of the degree requirements, a grade of C (a C- does NOT count) or better is required for all music courses in the Bachelor of Arts in Music major...To receive credit toward completion of the degree requirements, a grade of C or better is required for all music courses in the Bachelor of Music major.


And: Students with disabilities who need reasonable accommodations are encouraged to contact the instructor. The Disability Programs and Resource Center (DPRC) is available to facilitate the reasonable accommodations process. The DPRC is located in the Student Service Building and can be reached by telephone (voice/TTY 415-338-2472) or by email (


SF State fosters a campus free of sexual violence including sexual harassment, domestic violence, dating violence, stalking, and/or any form of sex or gender discrimination. If you disclose a personal experience as an SF State student, the course instructor is required to notify the Dean of Students. To disclose any such violence confidentially, contact:  The SAFE Place - (415) 338-2208; Counseling and Psychological Services Center - (415) 338-2208; For more information on your rights and available resources:


It is your responsibility to get notes from any class you miss.  Do not send emails or request appointments regarding material covered during an unexcused absence.  Disruptive or distracting behavior will not be tolerated and may result in you being asked to leave or have an assigned seat.  Such behavior includes: inappropriate talking with classmates, using cell phones or other electronic devices, repeatedly arriving late, and/or engaging in distracting behavior.  BRING YOUR TEXTBOOK TO CLASS.


There may be instances where we need to make individual, special arrangements.  In these cases, it is best that we do so in person.  However, it will also be necessary to follow up such face-to-face communications with confirmation emails.  In the event that we have made a special arrangement, please make sure we have at least done so in writing.  If you write to me, please communicate as clearly as possible.  While this is a music class, you are expected to practice college-level, professional communication standards in your written and oral communication. Make sure your SFSU email is set up to forward to your regular/personal email.


The syllabus (including assignments, exam and grade distributions) and downloads are subject to revisions as the semester progresses.  Check the syllabus web page often and listen for announcements in class.  Do not download the lecture notes and/or assignments all at once in case revisions are made as the semester progresses.


In an ongoing effort to nurture your notation skills, all work handed in must be written in pencil; computer-notated assignments will not be accepted. When using staff paper for any assignment, the paper should have no left- or right-side bar lines and have no clefs printed on it. Notation is a factor in grading. Notation errors, cross-outs, sloppy notation or analyses may lower assignment grades and/or will be handled on a discretionary basis.


The Music Office is requiring as little photocopying as possible.  You should plan to be able to print supplemental, required materials for class on a regular basis.  All materials will be available through the web syllabus and will be PDF files.





(Week No.)

Week of

Class Topics and Downloadable Notes

(day covered–"M, W, F")


Assignments and items to print

for that week with specific due day


Jan 27

Class organization, course overview (M)

Introduction to diatonic harmony (WF)

Overtone Series Tutorial (F)

Print: Mozart K.331 Link (audio)



Feb 3

Ch. 3: Triads, 7th chords, figured bass (MWF)

Ch. 3 Reading Sheet

Chromaticism in figured bass

Print: Note stacking tutorial


(F) Ch. 3 (part I)


Feb 10

Ch. 3 continued (M)

Ch. 4: Diatonic chords (WF) Ch. 4 Reading Sheet

(F) Ch. 3 (part II): Question 2 audio; Question 3 audio


Feb 17

Ch. 4 continued (M)

Ch. 5: Voice leading (WF) Ch. 5 Reading Sheet

(F) Ch. 4: Question 2 audio; Question 3 audio


Feb 24

Ch. 5 continued (M)

Ch. 6: Root position part writing (WF)

Ch. 6 Reading Sheet

(F) Ch. 5


March 2

Ch. 6 continued (M)

Ch. 7: Harmonic progressions (WF)

(including 2nd level analysis)

Ch. 7 Reading Sheet

Circle of 5ths progressions/jazz (pdf)

(F) Ch. 6



March 9

Ch. 7 continued (M)

Ch. 8: First inversion triads (WF)

Ch. 8 Reading Sheet

(M & W) Keyboard Harmony Requirement


(F) Ch. 7




March 16

Ch. 8 continued (M)

Ch. 9: Second inversion triads (WF)

Ch. 9 Reading Sheet

(F) Ch. 8


March 23 – 27: Spring Recess, No Class



March 30

Ch. 9 continued (MW)

Ch. 10: Cadences, phrases, periods (F)

Ch. 10 Reading Sheet

All The Cadences... (pdf) (Audio/mp3)

Period Examples

(F) Ch. 9: Clementi audio


April 6

Ch. 10 continued (MWF) - The Sentence

(F) Piano composition project due  *  Audio link


April 13

Ch. 10 continued (MW)

Ch. 11: Non chord tones I (F)

Ch. 11 Reading Sheet

All the NCTs...(pdf)

Unornamented example (audio)

Passing Tone (audio)  *  Neighbor Tone (audio)

Suspension (audio)  *  Retard (audio)Ch. 12: Non chord tones II

(F) Ch. 10, Minuet in G audio; Op. 13, ii audio





April 20

Ch. 11 continued (M)s

Ch. 12 Reading Sheet (WF)

Appoggiatura (audio)  *  Escape Tone (audio)

Neighbor Group (audio)  *  Anticipation (audio)

Pedal Tone/Point (audio)

Embellishing a simple texture with all NCTs  *  (Audio)

(F) Ch. 11, hilf herr Jesu audio, unembellished 4-part audio



April 27

Ch. 12 continued (M)

Final composition assignment discussed (M)

Ch. 13: The V7 chord (WF)

Ch. 13 Reading Sheet

(M) Extra Credit Assignment #1 (pdf of score) (audio example)


(F) Ch. 12, Mozart K. 545, iii audio, unembellished 4-part audio



May 4

Ch. 14: II7 and VII7 Chords (M)

Ch. 14 Reading Sheet

Ch. 15: Other diatonic 7th chords (W)

Ch. 15 Reading Sheet

Ch. 18 An introduction to modulation (F)


(W) Ch. 13, Bach WTC audio


May 11

Culminating Perspectives (MW)

Wrap-up (F)

Final Composition Drafts returned (F)

(M) Hand In: Final Composition Draft

final composition project

audio example

Composition checklist




May 18

Final Gathering: (M) May 18, 10:15a – 12:15p:

Bring in your marked-up final composition draft; go over feedback; begin work on final draft.

(F, May 22, 11am or earlier) Hand In:

final composition project

Extra Credit Assignment #2 (audio example)

Due by Friday, May 22, 11am